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Board of County Commissioners

July 1, 2003

The Honorable Board of County Commissioners met today with the following present: Roy W. Crow, Scott D. Livie, and William W. Pickrum, presiding.

T. Edward Robinson, County Administrator, was also in attendance.

Minutes of the previous meeting were approved.

W. Roger Williams, Treasurer, reported a balance of $ 2,234,021.00.


The Commissioners received nine form letters of opposition to the airport project.

Commissioner Pickrum reported that although this Board had intended to have a public meeting on the airport project, events have developed that preclude a public discussion. He announced that the County will no longer proceed with an airport at the current location. He noted of the Board's concern that the environmental assessment expired December 31, 2002 which was not brought to the Board's attention until recently. Commissioner Pickrum stated that an adhoc committee will be appointed to conduct a feasibility/business plan for an airport in the County. Commissioner Crow noted that the adhoc committee, once appointed, will be requested to report their findings by October 1, 2003.


The Commissioners received notification that on July 9 the Rock Hall Planning Commission will hear the application submitted by the Kent County Commissioners for construction of a 100' X 6" boardwalk at Bayside Public Landing.


The Commissioners approved and signed Resolution for the authorization and financial approval of the acquisition of a pumper truck by the Betterton Volunteer Fire Company for a maximum amount of $248,000.00.


Jeddie DeCoursey, Jean Motter, and Lee Horsey, representing the Chestertown Homemakers Club, appeared to present the Bicentennial Quilt made by the Homemakers Club. Mrs. DeCoursey advised that the quilt was specifically made to be displayed at the 1976 Tea Party Festival commemorating the nationwide Bicentennial Celebration. Suggestion was made to have the quilt displayed at the Chestertown Visitors Center during peak times. Mrs. DeCoursey cautioned that the quilt should not be exposed to sunlight as the fabric will fade. The handmade quilt will reside in the Commissioners' Hearing Room until a safe permanent display area is decided upon.


Notification was received from Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. advising that George R.Parsons, Jr. was reappointed as a member and Judith Ann Kennard was reappointed as a substitute member to the Board of Election Supervisors for a four year term commencing June, 2003.


Pat Merritt, Director, Budget and Accounting, forwarded a request to replace Shelley Butler's computer which has been malfunctioning. Mrs. Merritt requested the expenditure in the amount of $698 be funded from the FY 04 contingency fund. Commissioner Pickrum questioned the capacity of the requested computer and recommended an upgrade to the purchase.

Commissioner Livie stated that in the future, computer equipment be funded from the Information Systems budget rather than contingency fund. Commissioner Pickrum noted the need for an Information Systems resource plan. A motion was made by Commissioner Livie, seconded by Commissioner Crow and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to purchase computer upgrade up to the amount of $1,200 out of the contingency fund.


In response to the Commissioners' request for assistance relating to the enforcement of the Clean Air Act in Kent and Queen Anne's Counties, the Commissioners received correspondence from Senator Paul Sarbanes advising that he has contacted the Environmental Protection Agency for further review.


First reading was held on Code Home Rule Bill No. 4-2003, which is an Act to legalize the 2002 supplements to the Code of Public Local Laws of Kent County (1994 Edition) published under the direction of the Board of County Commissioners of Kent County and making provision for the publication, sale and distribution of the supplements. A public hearing will be scheduled on July 15.


The Commissioners received correspondence from Delegate Howard Rawlings, Chairman, House Appropriations Committee, and Delegate Norman Conway, Chairman, Capital Budget Subcommittee, advising that the General Assembly pre-authorized funding for capital projects for FY 2005 and funding will be available on June 1, 2004. Included in that funding was the Kent County Community Center for a grant in the amount of $500,000.


The Commissioners attended a retreat session with JAE Facilitation and Training, Inc.

on June 27 which resulted in drafting goals for the County. The draft strategies and to whom they are to be delegated were reviewed with Carter Stanton, Public Works Director, P.A.M. Schaller, Economic Development Director, Gail Owings, Director of Planning and Zoning Administration, Pat Merritt, Budget and Accounting Director, Bernadette Van Pelt, Tourism Director, Wayne Morris, Director, Department of Water and Wastewater Services and Carla Martin, Community Planner. Mrs. Owings and Ms. Martin agreed to prepare a power point presentation which the Commissioners will present to department heads, Board of Education and to the public in the near future.


Wayne Morris, Director, Department of Water and Wastewater Services, appeared to report on the following issues:

Worton - Contract by and between the County Commissioners and Chesapeake Diesel was approved and signed by the Board for the provision and installation for the replacement oftwo emergency generators at Worton Pump Station #4 at Worton.

Worton Well Project - Mr. Morris provided an update on the Worton Well project and advised that the new well yielded 175- 200 gallons per minute versus the current 30 gallons per minute. He reported that the well would be hooked up to the pump station in approximately two weeks.

Piney Neck Service Area - Mr. Morris reported of a request from Nancy Lee Pamatory, Piney Neck Road, for a sewer allocation for property located on Tax Map 55, Parcel 52. Per Mr. Morris's recommendation, the Commissioners approved the request.

Tolchester Service Area - In follow-up from June 24 sewer allocation request from Mr. Smith, Mr. Morris provided a map delineating an environmentally sensitive area as referred to in the Tolchester Growth Management Plan. He advised that currently there are no homes or roads in the area. Commissioner Livie stated his goal to keep growth near current developments. Mr. Morris concurred and noted that the growth management plan should be updated since it was done prior to the State's "Smart Growth" Program. Commissioner Pickrum expressed concern of devaluing property if sewer services were not expanded. The County Administrator noted that a committee had been established to review the Tolchester Service Area and a recommendation would be available in several months. Mr. Morris emphasized the need to update the service strategy for Tolchester. Commissioner Pickrum noted that the homeowner association will be responsible for upgrading the roads. The Commissioners thanked Mr. Morris for the update.


Commissioners Crow and Pickrum made a site visit to the Detention Center and were given a tour of the facilities by Warden Ron Howell. Warden Howell expressed concern as to crowded conditions, more specifically, the work release area at this facility. The Commissioners agreed to take these concerns under advisement.


A bid opening was held at 9:00 a.m. in the Commissioners' Hearing Room for a grant funded emergency generator for WCTR. Jim Wright, County Engineer/Purchasing Coordinator, was in attendance. Only one bid was received.

Chesapeake Diesel $18,575.00

Mr. Wright recommended to award the bid to Chesapeake Diesel for an emergency generator in the amount of $18,575.00. He noted the estimated cost was $20,000. A motion was made by Commissioner Crow, seconded by Commissioner Livie and made unanimous to award the bid to Chesapeake Diesel in the amount of $18,575.00.


Correspondence went forth to Robert Rust, Jr., Director, Emergency Management, and Chief Paramedic Stacey Gouldin, expressing the Board's appreciation for having a paramedic staff present at Hopkins Game Farm for the U.S. Open.

Correspondence was received from Donald Keldsen, Director, Maryland Emergency Management Agency, advising of a July 1 meeting in Queen Anne's County to discuss funds allocated to Maryland's Eastern Shore from the Homeland Security Grant Program. Bob Rust, Emergency Management Director, and Sue Willits, Emergency Planning Coordinator, attended this meeting.

The Commissioners approved and signed Memorandum of Understanding between the Maryland Emergency Management Agency and Kent County regarding Fiscal Year 2003 State Homeland Security Grant Program for the amount of $59,016.52 for purchase of detection equipment.

Correspondence was received from Donald Keldsen, Director, Maryland Emergency Management Agency, advising of the opportunity to provide information in the Maryland Emergency Management Agency Hazard Mitigation Best Practices.


The Commissioners approved a Raffle Permit for American Cancer Society to sell raffle tickets and drawing will be held during the Relay for Life event on September 12 and 13 at the Kent County High School.


The Commissioners approved and signed the Fiscal Year 2004 Core Public Health Services Agreement.


Correspondence was received from Gregg Bird, Vice President, Kent County Fire Chief's Association, requesting consideration be given to introduce impact fees to assist in funding emergency service in the County. He also forwarded an article from the Cecil Whig reporting that a task force is to be assigned in Cecil County to review volunteer fire company funding options.


The Commissioners received a copy of correspondence directed to James Shrybman and Keith Parsky, counsel for Mr. and Mrs. Jon Mullen, curators of Knocks Folly, from Paul Cucuzzella, Assistant Attorney General, Department of Natural Resources and Julie Hallam and Jan Bryant, Assistant Attorneys General, Department of Housing and Community Development, requesting to exhaust all settlement offers prior to the July 14 trial date relating to the alleged unauthorized (by the Maryland Historical Trust) construction of a garage on this property.


The Commissioners received correspondence from Judith Morenoff, President, League of Women Voters of Maryland, Inc., expressing concern about the erosion of civil liberties in this country by adopting the USA Patriot Act of 2001 and the Homeland Security Act and requested the Commissioners to closely monitor the implementation of these acts and to work to repeal onerous portions that violate civil rights and liberties.


At 10:15 a.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Livie, seconded by Commissioner Crow and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into executive session with M. Susanne Hayman, County Attorney, for legal counsel in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 of the Annotated Code of Maryland.

Items of discussion included airport, Coast Guard Station, and nuisance ordinance violation.

The executive session adjourned at 10:25 a.m.


The Commissioners received a copy of correspondence directed to Carter Stanton, Director, Public Works, from Gloria Urban, Director, Kent County Library, advising of continued leaks in the library roof during storms.


Contract by and between the County Commissioners and Site Construction, Inc. was approved and signed by the Board for the interior renovation and addition project to the Kent County Public Library Building (formerly known as the Hearse House) located on 207 Calvert Street, Chestertown.


Anne Livie, Director, Local Management Board, (LMB) appeared to discuss the status of project/grants. She advised that the LMB is funded from both State and Federal funding sources to support the children of the community. Mrs. Livie reported that the LMB budget was cut by $93,000 from the State. Mrs. Livie reviewed current programs and noted of concern that the rate of children completing school was not at an acceptable level and hoped to have programs to address juvenile justice offenders.


The Commissioners approved and Commissioner Pickrum executed a Letter of Agreement between Mid-Shore Mental Health Systems, Inc. and Caroline Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne's, and Talbot Counties delineating the responsibilities for the management of the public mental health system during the period of July 1, 2003 to June 30, 2004.


The County Administrator approved and signed the Amendment adopting new required minimum distribution regulations as it relates to the Employees of Kent County Retirement Trust. This amendment will cover changes that have occurred in the Internal Revenue Service Code during the close out of the Valic Pension Plan.


At 10:30 a.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Livie, seconded by Commissioner Crow, and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into executive session to discuss personnel matters in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 of the Annotated Code of Maryland. Susanne Hayman, County Attorney was also in attendance.

The executive session adjourned at 11:00 a.m.


At 1:00 p.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Crow, seconded by Commissioner Pickrum and passed by the majority of the Board to go into executive session with Sheriff John Price to discuss an issue relating to public security in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 of the Annotated Code of Maryland. Commissioner Livie was absent during this meeting.

The executive session adjourned at 1:10 pm.


The Commissioners received correspondence from Dorothy Morlock, Rock Hall requesting continued funding for the USTAR Transportation program.


The Commissioners received correspondence from Maryland Department of the Environment, Water Management Administration, advising that a water appropriation permit has been issued to Kent Sand and Gravel, LLC, for product washing. For further information contact Mark Filar, Chief Water Rights Division, (410) 537-3590.


An application for a zoning map amendment was received from Arthur and Anne Foster, represented by Herschell Claggett, Realtor, by reclassifying property from the Rural Residential Zone to Commercial Residential Zone located on MD Route 213. This application will be referred to the Planning Commission for recommendation.

There being no further business to claim their attention, the Board adjourned to meet again on Tuesday, July 8, 2003.


Please contact Joyce Laskey or Janice Fletcher at (410) 778-7435 or by e-mail with any questions or comments.

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